Stray Dogs

A Case Study

Holistic design study for helping stray dogs in India

Duration

3 Weeks

Client

Self Initiated

Solo/ Team

Solo

Type

Research

Let's define the problem

India is a home to roughly 35 million street dogs with 17% population growth over last 4 years. Through this study we want to study the problems of street dogs and what can be done from us as humans to help them. The ecosystem is complicated with diverse factors like weather, diseases, laws, human involvement, etc. 

Who is impacted by the problem?

Street dogs

What happens when problem occurs?

Hunger, malnutrition, death

Where does the problem occur?

Urban Areas

Why does the problem occur?

Overpopulation

When does the problem occur?

Uncertain

Problem statement

Overpopulation has been an ongoing problem in local shelters.  There are too many street dogs and not enough homes for them.  Street animals face numerous problem including health, weather, food, accidents, and even allergies.

Empathy Map for Non-Humans

Taking an anthropomorphized version of ideal Non-Users.

A female Indie Street dog with 2-3 years of age in a semi-urban locality

Think/ Feel

Hunger

Sad

Sleepy

Pain

Unloved

Noise

territorial 

Food smell around the area

Injury

Intimation by pets

Competition

See

Humans
Crowd
Group dogs
Care takers
Society people
Vehicles
Other area dogs

Pets

Other street animals & birds

Household waste

Colony/ society people/ kids

Directions/ Roads/ Paths

Garbage

Listen

Human Violence
Shooing
Fights
Vehicle Noise
Firework Noise
Competition
Dogs from other areas

Say/Do

Bark

Chase vehicles

Chase other area dogs

Play with each other

Reproduction

Love playing with Sand

Revolt danger

Gazing

Licking

Begging

Snarling

Growling

Biting

Point of view statement (POV)

Millions of street dogs living in urban parts of the country need care. As the population rate is not moderated, what can be done to overcome avoidable obstacles and co-habitat in society?

Let's talk facts

  • Selling animals in India isn't illegal. Rule is seller should be registered with Animal Welfare Board of the state.

  • Quikr had 18655 listings under Pet Adoption across India, Source The Mint, July 20.

  • Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, crimes against pets are bailable. However, crimes under Wildlife Act (Tiger, Lions) are non-bailable & include imprisonment.  

  • In 20 years in the city of Mumbai alone, 429 individuals bitten by free-ranging dogs died by rabies, while 1.3 million people were injured.

  • Different experiences of the dogs in these regions might explain the differential behavior.

  • India sees 1.75 million dog bites and up to 20,000 cases of rabies annually in India.

  • In 2018, Karnataka had the second highest rate of rabies deaths in India

I want to keep these points in mind during the course of the study.

What does Media cover?

I saw a lot of fact based news in the favor of humans.

Group 1718.png

Understanding current mode of adoption

Let's understand the choices and mindset of current pet owners. I took a short survey with 20 existing pet owners. Check out their detailed responses below.

Dog's aging process

Research from RSPCA has shown that the average lifespan for purebred dogs is 11.9 years, with crossbred dogs averaging a longer 13.1 years. This obviously varies from breed to breed and dogs transition through the four stages of their life cycle at different speeds. Dogs go through four stages of the life cycle: puppy, adolescent, adulthood and senior.

I want to understand the aging of dogs and target a stage. 
a) Where they need most care.   b) Where they suffer most

Puppy

  • 6-18 Months

  • 2-3 weeks puppy starts 
    to see and hear

  • Able to stand and move

  • Need care and direction

  • Unsafe near traffic

  • Dependent on pack of dogs

Adolescent

  • Begins after 6-18 Months

  • Finds its own food

  • Faces dominance from
    adult dogs

  • Struggle finding food

  • Unsafe near traffic

  • Influenced by pack of dogs

Adulthood

  • Begins from 2 Years

  • Does plenty of exercise/walk

  • Influence other dogs

  • Reproduce

Senior

  • From 8-10 Years

  • Moves less

  • Sleeps more

  • Eats less

  • Disconnects from territory 
    packs

Non-Personas

ABOUT

I'm an indie dog living in a colony somewhere in the city. My favourite food is chicken bones. I love to play with my children. I prefer not to leave my territory. I had 6 puppies, 2 died after 1 week, 1 puppy went away. I live with 3 of them.

AGE

3 Years

GENDER

Female

LOCATION

Semi-urban (Colony

with ~12 houses) Jhansi

PAIN POINTS

  1. Dominance of male dogs while getting food

  2. Curing diseases/ itching/ fight-scars

  3. Fear of losing territory

Ecosystem Study

Ecosystem Map Figure 1

Ecosystem Map Figure 2

Group 1718.png

Possible Solutions

Pet Shops

Pros

  • Have proper facilities

  • Can take government permissions

  • Spread across the country

Cons

  • Usually don't take in street dogs

  • Available in Urban cities 

  • Some are not registered

Adoption App

Pros

  • Can address actual problems

  • Easy to maintain and scalable

Cons

  • Not permitted by Law

Group 1718.png

Infrastructure

Pros

  • Dogs will not have to move, they can live in the places created in their own territory

Cons

  • Cost

  • Availability of Food

  • Maintenance

  • Availability of land

  • Low scalability

  • Chances of corruption

App Connecting Pet Shops

Pros

  • Ownership of tasks remains to Pet Shops

  • Can expand to any number

  • Actions will always be localized

Cons

  • Accountability

  • Laws

  • Adaptability of pet shops

In further case study we will see the best solution possible as per POV statement, based on this analysis.